Development Crossing

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Sustainability

Members Project 2008 - American Express winner is End Human Trafficking : Sustainable Livelihoods

Since 2007, American Express launched a prize called members Project to price the best ideas to change the world, but they can't do it by themselves. So 2.5Millions are offered and the whole marketing and media impact comes along.

The winner project was submitted by Lulan Artisans from South Carolina - US - Project ID: JAO706 - the project involving Community Development, Microfinance and Economic Development and the area of impact will be Laos, Cambodia, Vietnan and Korea was END HUMAN TRAFFICKING : SUSTAINABLE LIVELIHOODS.

The Project

Their project is a locally driven social venture that creates an alliance of textile designers and gifted artisans in Southeast Asia to produce luxurious hand-woven fabrics. By providing economic opportunity, we help preserve hand-weaving in Asia while creating environmentally sustainable fabrics. Collections include fabric-by-the-yard,as well as home and fashion accessories that are marketed through select retailers. They are ready to hire thousands of weavers and build innovative weaving centers.

The Problem They Addressed

They preserve artisan traditions and promote economic development by creating sustainable livelihoods for their artisan partners, their families and communities. This offers economic and social options to people at risk in regards to human trafficking and poverty. Their method utilizes a scalable, replicable model for each specific region to offer expertise in product development, fair wages and to provide the benefits needed whether childcare, education, housing, literacy classes or health care.

The Impact The Project will have

They currently support over 650 weavers,spinners,dyers and finishers using a holistic approach to produce eco-fabrics in Thailand,Cambodia,Laos and India. Their goal is to increase the number of artisans to over 6,000,thus expanding our reach to more weaving families and communities. They will work with international and local architects to build inventive, replicable off-the-grid weaving centers. Each building design will be shared through Creative Commons licensing so more communities can benefit.

Their Inspiration

While living in Asia, they witnessed the ill effects of human trafficking and the Tsunami devastation. The interplay between a strong economic engine and built environment allows for communities to thrive and grow. After 3 years of working with 18 weaving groups in 5 countries,this model is proven. But to achieve this project’s fullest potential,I am determined to increase the number of artisans and communities we positively impact while expanding our weaving centers and production of our textiles.

This year 1,190 projects inscriptions and select 25 where 87, 289 members of the popular credit card vote to select 5 and all process in less then 3 months Members Project launches in mid July and the 5 finalists are indicated end September and 13 days to count the votes of the Members.

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